Any form of activity that requires an employee to lift, move, or support a load is classed as a manual handling task.
The injuries caused by incorrect manual handling can have huge impacts on both the employer and affected workers.
You can significantly reduce work-related injuries by promoting health and safety policies. Like a manual handling risk assessment.
Download our manual handling risk assessment template for free. And see how you can promote safe working practices in your business. Minimising future workplace accidents and injuries.
What is a manual handling risk assessment?
We use a manual handling risk assessment to identify and manage risks during tasks that require human handling and establish the methods for the tasks to be carried out safely.
Employers can then use the assessment to provide reasonably practical training on the working practices to their employees.
Some tasks can be done with machines and don’t need human assistance. However, for tasks that do, it’s vital to use risk assessments and place sensible measures to prevent injuries.
When should a manual handling risk assessment be performed?
Legislation requires you to do a risk assessment when you cannot avoid using manual handling during work.
These, like most business risk assessments, help you manage work activities and decide on suitable control measures.
It’s good business practice to review all health and safety policies and risk assessments:
- After any workplace accident
- After relevant legislation updates.
- Changes in business processes
Who is responsible for conducting a manual handling risk assessment?
Responsibility normally falls to the employer. They hold overall responsibility for such tasks, as well as other workplace health and safety.
This doesn’t mean you have to do everything yourself.
You can appoint responsible health and safety officers, who are competent and trained in managing risks.
Why do I need a manual handling risk assessment?
You are legally responsible for carrying out a manual handling risk assessment within your business. This is part of your duty of care under The Manual Handling Operations Regulations 1992 and The Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations 1999.
- Workers are responsible for:
- Following safe working methods.
- Using equipment safely.
- Co-operating with management on health and safety matters.
- Reporting potential safety risks discovered during tasks.
- Taking care not to put themselves or others at risk.
What should be included in a manual handling risk assessment template?
Whether you’re carrying boxes in the office or moving loads on a construction site, it’s important to cover all aspects of manual handling.
Having basic principles can help staff move loads as safely as possible. And minimise work-related injuries, particularly musculoskeletal disorders and other medical issues.
Some manual handling risk assessment factors to consider:
- Introduce mechanical aids
- Minimise moving loads across long distances
- Minimise obstructions in the work area
- Reduce lifting loads from floor level or above shoulder height
- Provide frequent breaks to help muscle recovery
- Assign suitable tasks based on workers’ capability (especially for vulnerable workers like young people, those with health conditions, or pregnant workers).
It’s a legal requirement that your workers are competently trained for tasks involving manual handling. However, if possible, try to consider mechanical aids before introducing training.
Mechanical aids like forklifts, conveyors, hoists, and trolleys can significantly help reduce risks if used correctly. Include them in your risk assessment template and inspect the equipment regularly.
Download our free manual handling risk assessment template
Managing hazardous work tasks can help safeguard all your employees under your care. Which in turn increases business productivity for you, and workforce morale.
Peninsula can supply a manual handling risk assessment example that suits your business. We also offer expert employment health and safety advice. And also provide services on risk assessment and safety training.
Peninsula clients also get access to 24/7 HR consultation with our employment specialists. And if you are not yet a client, you can still enjoy free employment health and safety advice from one of our business experts. Simply call us on 0800 028 2420
Disclaimer: This template is provided ‘as is’ and Peninsula Business Services Ltd excludes all representations, warranties, obligations and liabilities in relation to the template to the maximum extent permitted by law.
Peninsula Business Services Ltd is not liable for any errors or omissions in the template and shall not be liable for any loss, injury or damage of any kind caused by its use. Use of the template is entirely at the risk of the User and should you wish to do so then independent legal advice should be sought before use.
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